Contents (Click To Jump)
- 1 What Are the Most Common Tree Issues in Oakland?
- 2 Does the City of Oakland Provide Any Assistance in Tree Removal Problems?
- 3 Who Is Responsible for Fallen Tree Removal in Oakland?
- 4 How Does the Soil Affect Trees in Oakland?
- 5 Does Weather Affect Tree Health in Oakland?
- 6 What if Trees Are Near Power Lines in Oakland?
- 7 How Much Does Tree Removal Usually Cost in Oakland?
What Are the Most Common Tree Issues in Oakland?
Oakland is home to many tree species, but many issues threaten them, primarily pests and diseases. Learning to identify these issues is the first step in preventing an outbreak that could seriously injure or even kill your trees. Here are some of the most common tree issues affecting Oakland trees:
- Emerald ash borer (EAB): This is a small, metallic green, invasive pest that infests and kills ash trees. All ash species are susceptible, except mountain ash. Since its discovery in Michigan in 2002, the emerald ash borer has killed hundreds of millions of ash trees in North America. In fact, according to the New Jersey EAB Task Force, the emerald ash borer has the potential to kill 99% of ash trees in the Garden State. The larvae feed on the inner bark and disrupt the movement of water and nutrients, essentially girdling the tree. If your tree has EAB, you’ll see a premature yellowing of its leaves in the summer and a loss of foliage earlier than expected. Infected trees usually die within three years. This disease can be more difficult to detect than others, but we can look inside the tree trunk for burrowed holes that the beetle creates. We can help evaluate, treat, or remove infected ash trees.
- Anthracnose: This fungal disease is found throughout the eastern states and is particularly prevalent in our area. It primarily affects sycamore, ash, oak, maple, and dogwood trees, causing spots or lesions on leaves and twigs, curling leaves, dried-up leaves, and defoliation. Healthy trees can generally survive one or two years of defoliation but, after that, they begin to decline. Early detection of anthracnose can allow for the removal of the disease. If this disease overtakes the tree, you will need to contact us to remove it from your property before the infection can spread to other trees.
- Apple scab: This is a fungal disease that attacks apple and crabapple trees. Leaves become yellowish and fall off over the summer, sometimes leaving the tree defoliated. Fruit will also develop circular dark brown spots and become deformed, and they often rot and drop prematurely. Apart from the aesthetic issues caused by apple scab, this fungal disease also weakens the tree and makes it more vulnerable to other diseases and pests.
Other diseases affecting Oakland trees include:
- Boxwood blight
- Hawthorn rust
- Dutch elm disease
- Needle cast
- Armillaria root rot
- Seiridium cranker
- Cedar-apple rust
- Bacterial leaf scorch
Does the City of Oakland Provide Any Assistance in Tree Removal Problems?
The Oakland Department of Public Works (DPW) is responsible for maintaining public trees such as those on streets and parks. However, the borough requires property owners to maintain trees extending over the borough’s right-of-way. This includes pruning, trimming, and tree removal. You’ll be notified if any of the trees you’re responsible for need to be removed, and you have to comply within 30 days’ notice or 35 days after mailing the notice. If you fail to comply, the borough’s DPW will remove the tree at your cost.
Who Is Responsible for Fallen Tree Removal in Oakland?
Fallen trees are more than a nuisance. They can also cause extensive property damage and set you back hundreds or thousands of dollars in tree removal costs. In Oakland, tree removal responsibility varies depending on the situation.
If you’re a homeowner?
Oakland homeowners are responsible for maintaining trees on their property, including trimming, pruning, and removal. If you’re part of a Homeowner’s Association, your HOA will remove any fallen trees in common areas. In most cases, homeowners insurance will cover tree removal costs and any property damage.
If you’re a renter?
Landscape maintenance responsibilities rarely fall on the renter. Unless explicitly stated on your lease agreement, your landlord or property management company is responsible for tree removal. In case of damage to your property, your renters insurance will likely cover it.
If you’re a landlord?
As a landlord in Oakland, you own the trees on your property and are responsible for their maintenance and removal when they fall. Your insurance typically covers tree removal, so be sure to call your insurance carrier before paying out of pocket.
If you’re a neighbor?
If your neighbor’s tree falls onto your property in Oakland, you’ll be responsible for its removal. The same applies if your tree fell onto your neighbor’s property. However, you may be held liable if you knew the tree was diseased, dying, or dead, and failed to address the problem.
How Does the Soil Affect Trees in Oakland?
Dominant soils in Oakland are classified as the Downer series, a deep, well-drained soil developed from acid, loamy Coastal Plain sediments. These soils are mostly woodland soil which makes them perfect for trees. Trees that do well in Downer soils include white oak, red oak, scarlet oak, black oak, Virginia pine, scattered pitch pine, pitch pine, hickory, sassafras, dogwood, green briar, and American Holly.
However, downer soils are generally low in organic matter and clay and have medium natural fertility but are productive with added fertilizer. Using fertilizer and organic matter can give your soil an extra boost, providing your tree with unique nutrients that it won’t be able to get anywhere else. This will result in increased tree growth and better resilience against insects and disease.
Does Weather Affect Tree Health in Oakland?
Oakland has a moderate climate with warm, humid summers and relatively cold winters, and there’s moderate rainfall throughout the year. While our native New Jersey trees such as hazel alder, silver bell, sweet birch, flowering dogwood, black spruce, red oak, American holly, and tulip trees are generally hardy and well suited to the climate, summer storms and the icy temperatures, and frosty conditions of winter can still wreak havoc on them.
Trees that are exposed to extreme heat and dry conditions during the summer can be stressed and more prone to health issues the following winter. You can minimize summer storm damage on your trees by thinning the top of a tree to reduce wind sail, allowing wind to blow through the tree, and minimizing falling branches during a storm. This type of pruning should only be done by a certified arborist like Tree Triage, experienced with correct and safe pruning methods. Installing support cables for large trees can also provide strength and minimize storm damage.
Deep, consistent watering also helps your trees stay hydrated throughout the summer. Adding mulch to the tree base during summer and winter is another way to protect your trees from weather damage. A layer of insulating mulch can moderate temperature changes in the soil; the soil stays cooler in the summer and warmer in winter. Mulch also traps precipitation and keeps it available for the tree.
What if Trees Are Near Power Lines in Oakland?
Tree interference is a leading cause of outages; that’s why electric utility companies routinely perform vegetation management to prevent trees from growing into power lines. Dead trees are especially hazardous since they’re unstable and strong winds can easily topple them, causing them to fall over power lines. The electric company’s arborists will assess the tree to determine that it’s a safety hazard and recommend its removal. Most electric utility companies in Oakland will only cut down the tree and dispose of branches less than 4 inches in diameter, leaving the larger wood on your property for you to use as firewood or to dispose of because you are the owner of the tree.
How Much Does Tree Removal Usually Cost in Oakland?
Removing a tree, whether it’s big or small, is best left to the professionals like us. But how much is tree removal going to cost you? Tree removal in Oakland typically ranges between $200 to $1,750 for a typical project, with an average total of around $700. This price can increase or decrease depending on several factors, including:
One of the most significant considerations when it comes to the cost of tree removal in Oakland is the size of the tree in question. A tree’s height and circumference dictate the difficulty of the tree removal process, as well as the amount of preparation, time, and labor it would take to remove the tree from your property safely.
For example, tall, skinny trees might present a problem for our professionals to climb and delimb. They’ll often need some mechanical assistance to reach the upper branches, meaning a higher cost. However, thicker trees can take more time to take down, meaning more time spent on the project, which may increase the price.
A small tree that’s less than 30 feet tall usually costs $175 to $500, while a medium-sized tree that’s 30 to 60 feet tall can cost you $400 and $1,000 respectively to remove. Large trees that are 60 to 80 feet tall cost about $1,000 to $1,600 to remove, and any tree taller than 80 feet will cost around $1,300 to $2,200 to remove.
Tree Condition and Location
A fallen tree is relatively much easier to remove than a healthy, standing tree. A strong, living tree takes more labor to properly cut through and safely bring down, increasing the price to reflect the labor involved. Though dead, rotting, or diseased trees don’t need intensive labor to remove compared to a standing, healthy tree, they may need special attention and equipment to remove safely. Supports could be required to prevent the tree from falling while being cut, and our arborists may need electric lifts if the tree cannot be safely climbed.
Also, the location of the tree plays a role in its removal cost. If you live outside of our service area, you’ll be charged extra to cover travel expenses. The more remote the area, the more the costs go up. Additionally, the tree’s location on your property matters a lot. You can expect to pay more if your tree is located in hard-to-reach places, such as between two structures or near power lines.
Some trees grow with a complex branch system that makes removal complicated. While Oakland is mainly home to deciduous trees (and some Evergreens), several tree types have unique attributes that affect tree removal pricing. For example, tall, thin trees like aspens can’t support a person’s weight, so extra equipment is needed to reach the top of the tree safely. On the other hand, the oak tree (a common tree type in Oakland) features very strong and sturdy wood, adding to the amount of time and labor necessary to remove it from your property. This will add to your overall tree removal cost.